Yesterday, as part of my NSO liaison duties, I attended an information session about the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS). I wish someone at Gettysburg had made these sorts of opportunities known to me as an undergraduate. This scholarship in particular I probably wouldn’t have gone for, because to be honest, it seems way more intense than I would have been willing to engage in as an undergraduate. The CLS is an 8-10 week summer immersion program, funding students to go to a country and learn a language. The students who came to speak about their experiences stressed how difficult and overwhelming the program was, but how rich and valuable of an experience it turned out to be. The CLS is not for the weak of heart – you’re in a new country, learning a new language, and very much isolated from everything that is familiar to you. But you get to learn an amazing new language, not commonly taught in the United States, such as Azerbaijani, Bengali, Indonesian, Punjabi, and Urdu. What a great experience!